by PAUL BICKLEY
In her 40-year career, longtime Brown County resident Dixie Ferrer has been a textile and ceramic artist and a painter. She has created quilts, silkscreens, batiks, tiles, oil paintings, water-based-paint collages with homemade papers, drawings, and photographs. More recently, she has been working on oil-paint-wax-and-paper collages. “Working in different arts has allowed me to collect and combine techniques,” says Ferrer, 73. “But I’ve always been a texture artist. I can’t get away from texture.”
In fact, Ferrer says she finds inspiration for her oil collages in the “tactile elements nature offers,” such as the rocks, water, bark, leaves, and flower petals she finds on her own 12 acres and in nearby Yellowwood State Forest. Landscapes, water scenes, and floral still lifes are three of Ferrer’s major subjects.
To represent nature’s tactility, Ferrer combines up to eight paint layers with cold wax and paper to sculpt surfaces. Drips, strokes, and spatters add more texture. “My feelings about a scene come first,” Ferrer says. “The feelings translate into an energy in the image.”
Throughout July, Ferrer will serve as the artist-in-residence at the T. C. Steele State Historic Site. Through a state Arts in the Parks grant, Ferrer will teach a two-day workshop July 20–21 titled Explore Nature through Collage. And, for the 15th year, Ferrer Studio will be a stop on the October Back Roads of Brown County Studio Tour.
Ferrer’s work can be viewed at the Brown County Art Guild or by appointment at the Ferrer Studio. For more, visit ddferrer.wixsite.com/mysite.